evangelical lutheran church of finland

Tarja Halonen (b. 1943) was the President of Finland from 2000 to 2012, serving as the country’s first female head of state. She is known for her very high approval ratings (88%) and advancement of human rights, particularly LGBT rights.

She has also served as a minister and member of parliament, and was the chairman of Seta, the main LGBT rights organization in Finland. Also thanks to her, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland now accepts female priests.

snecko-my-eggo-deactivated20170  asked:

Random question. Where are you from and what's it like there?

I’m from Finland :> It’s a sparsely populated country (totally only 5.5 million) located in northern Europe, between Sweden and Russia. 

Personally, I like the place. It’s my weird little homeland and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

As a rough generalization, Finns are somewhat reserved, yet genuine, sincere and hospitable. Finns don’t do small talk and the quiet moments in conversations aren’t considered awkward. High level of education, artistry and enterprise are some of the valued traits. Domestic violence, loneliness, alcoholism and lately joblessness are relatively common problems.

The culture dates back thousands of years. It has been influenced by the Scandinavian vikings of the west and the Slavic beliefs of the east. Our folklore is deeply rooted into nature, animals and pagan myths. The Christianity made it’s way to Finland in 11th century, nowadays most of the Finns are part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland. From what I’ve seen, it’s all rather secular and religion doesn’t play a big part in most of people’s lives.

The capital, Helsinki, is located at the southernmost coast. Most of the largest cities revolve around the lower half of the country. The northern part is called Lapland and it used to be inhabited by an indigenous group known as Sami people, nowadays they’re considered a minority. It’s also claimed that Santa Claus lives in Korvatunturi, Finnish Lapland, rather than in the North Pole.

The nature is vast, wild and unpolluted. There’s forests and lakes literally everywhere. If I’m not entirely mistaken, Finland’s fauna is slightly similar to that of Canada, just in a much smaller scale. Semi-domesticated reindeer roam around the Lapland and their meat is considered delicacy. 

We have four seasons a year. The summers are typically quite warm and the winters are freezing cold and snowy (or dark and wet if you live in the capital area, it seems). In the summertime the sun doesn’t set at all (it’s called the midnight sun) and in the midwinter it’s literally dark 24/7 (the polar night). Northern lights can be seen during the dark time of the year,

The school system is great and it doesn’t cost a penny, not even college education. I’m studying art education in an university for free. Systematical English lessons start at third grade of elementary school, so pretty much everyone can speak and understand English at least a little bit.

The size of the country certainly sets some limits, especially in the entertainment field; the animation industry is quite minuscule, for example. The gaming industry seems to be gaining momentum, encouraged by the success of the Angry Birds.

The health care system is also pretty good, it’s publicly funded and universal for all. As far as I’m concerned, you don’t need expensive insurances in order to receive decent treatment. 

Uhhh I can’t think of anything else, but do ask again if you have any further questions!